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CHRISTMAS, 1859.                                           Price 4d.


The Mortals in the House ............Page  1.
The Ghost in the Clock Room .....   "      8.
The Ghost in the Double Room....   "    13
The Ghost in the Picture Room....   "    19
The Ghost in the Cupboard Room  "     21
The Ghost in Master B.'s Room....  "     27
The Ghost in the Garden Room...   "     31
The Ghost in the Corner Room....   "     43


UNDER none of the accredited ghostly
circumstances, and environed by none of the
conventional ghostly surroundings, did I first make
acquaintance with the house which is the subject
of this Christmas piece. I saw it in the daylight,
with the sun upon it. There was no
wind, no rain, no lightning, no thunder, no awful
or unwonted circumstance, of any kind, to
heighten its effect. More than that: I had come
to it direct from a railway station; it was not
more than a mile distant from the railway station;
and, as I stood outside the house, looking
back upon the way I had come, I could see the
goods train running smoothly along the
embankment in the valley. I will not say that
everything was utterly common-place, because I
doubt if anything can be that, except to utterly
common-place people and there my vanity steps
in; but, I will take it on myself to say that anybody
might see the house as I saw it, any fine
autumn morning.

The manner of my lighting on it was this.

I was travelling towards London out of the
North, intending to stop by the way, to look at
the house. My health required a temporary
residence in the country ; and a friend of mine
who knew that, and who had happened to drive
past the house, had written to me to suggest it as
a likely place. I had got into the train at
midnight, and had fallen asleep, and had woke up
and had sat looking out of window at the brilliant
Northern Lights in the sky, and had fallen asleep
again, and had woken up again to find the night
gone, with the usual discontented conviction on
me that I hadn't been to sleep at all ; — upon
which question, in the first imbecility of that
condition, I am ashamed to believe that I would
have done wager by battle with the man who sat
opposite me. That opposite man had had,
through the nightas that opposite man always
hasseveral legs too many, and all of them too
long. In addition to this unreasonable conduct
(which was only to be expected of him), he had
had a pencil and a pocket-book, and had been
perpetually listening and taking notes. It had
appeared to me that these aggravating notes related
to the jolts and bumps of the carriage, and I should
have resigned myself to his taking them, under
a general supposition that he was in the civil-
engineering way of life, if he had not sat staring
straight over my head whenever he listened. He
was a goggle-eyed gentleman of a perplexed
aspect, and his demeanour became unbearable.

It was a cold, dead morning (the sun not being
up yet), and when I had out-watched the paling
light of the fires of the iron country, and the
curtain of heavy smoke that hung at once
between me and the stars and between me and
the day, I turned to my fellow-traveller and
said :

"I beg your pardon, sir, but do you observe
anything particular in me?"  For, really, he
appeared to be taking down, either my travelling-cap
or my hair, with a minuteness that was a liberty.

The goggle-eyed gentleman withdrew his eyes
from behind me, as if the back of the carriage
were a hundred miles off, and said, with a lofty
look of compassion for my insignificance

"In you, sir?–B."

"B, sir?" said I, growing warm.

"I have nothing to do with you, sir," returned
the gentleman; "pray let me listen–0."

He enunciated this vowel after a pause, and
noted it down.

At first I was alarmed, for an Express lunatic
and no communication with the guard, is a serious
position. The thought came to my relief that
the gentleman might be what is popularly called
a Rapper: one of a sect for (some of) whom
I have the highest respect, but whom I don't
believe in. I was going to ask him the question,
when he took the bread out of my mouth.